Message from the Director

an image of a coffe cup, pen, and letter

Summer 2022

Dear Friends of the Center,

As the academic year comes to an end, we wanted to thank you for your continued support.

Despite the ongoing challenges of the pandemic, the Center had a very productive year. We offered 12 courses on language and culture, literature and contemporary theater, history and current politics, and the Greek Orthodox tradition— both in-person and online. All courses were open to the community through the Extension program. Our 4-week Odyssey summer study abroad program in Spetses is ready to depart and it promises to be a transformative experience for our students who cannot wait to travel and study in Greece.

Due to many students' requests, our fall classes will be hybrid with our language and culture courses offered online and in-person. The rest of our academic courses will return to campus in-person with access options for those Extension students who prefer to continue online. You can see our fall hybrid schedule here.

Our community events this past year continued the celebration of the bicentenary of the 1821 Greek revolution and expanded to cover a variety of topics of interest to our students and community. In collaboration with local community organizations such as the Greek Heritage Society, the Hellenic Library, and the American-Hellenic Council, and with the support of the Greek Embassy in D.C. and the Consulate General of Greece in Los Angeles, the Center hosted lectures, book presentations, a genealogy workshop, and several film screenings. A long-standing partner of the Los Angeles Greek Film Festival (LAGFF), we kicked off the return of the festival in person with a reception and a special preview of acclaimed director Marianna Economou's film The Greek Bar Jacket and a photo exhibition of the photography of Myrto Papadopoulos. For more information about our events, visit our events page.

The Center and our community were deeply saddened by the passing of Demetrios Liappas (1938-2022), Director Emeritus of the Center (1980-2015) and a dear colleague and friend to many of us.

Thanks to a leadership gift made by Demetrios' family in his memory, we are delighted to initiate the Demetrios Liappas Legacy Fund, an endowed fund that will honor Demetrios' many contributions to the Center, the university, and our community.

The fund will provide support for a much-needed professorship for the Caloyeras Center. This position will allow the Center to support its multidisciplinary programmatic offerings and provide our students the opportunity to expand their knowledge about Greece in a number of new academic perspectives.

Among the many friends who generously contributed in memory of Demetrios, the Center would like to recognize Rosalind F. Halikis, Hope Berk, and the Caloyeras family for their leadership gifts to the fund as well as their continued support.

In the next months, we hope we can count on your support to reach our target goal of raising $1 million to seed this endowment in perpetuity. You can make a contribution here.

With a 45-year long history of promoting Greek language and culture, history, and the Greek Orthodox religion, the Caloyeras Center has been instrumental in preserving and promoting the core of Hellenism for our students and community in Southern California. But looking ahead, our hope is to expand the work of the Center beyond just the preservation of the past and into a deeper engagement with what Greece is today as well as with what it aspires to become in the future.

While we will continue honoring our past heritage with our long-established courses offered annually, we aim to expand our curriculum beyond the humanities in order to study Greece through the interdisciplinary lens of contemporary politics and international relations, peace and justice issues, urban and environmental sustainability studies, public health, entrepreneurship, and innovation and technology; all areas where Greece can be a major actor and leader into the 21st c.

In that direction, this fall we are looking forward to strengthening our work with the LMU International Relations and Peace and Justice programs and initiate our new semester-long study abroad program in Athens, Greece in collaboration with CYA/DIKEMES (College Year in Athens/International Centre for Hellenic and Mediterranean Studies). The Center is grateful to the Brown family for establishing an annual $10, 000 scholarship in support of studying abroad.

The work of the Caloyeras Center over the years has been possible only because of your support. We hope you will share our vision and excitement for the future and you will consider including the Center in your philanthropic plans with a tax-exempt gift. At any level, your support is critical as the Center's academic program, events, and activities are 100% supported by your annual contributions. Your support benefits our students and community directly. Consider making a gift today.

Visit our website to find out more about our academic program, students, events, and our endowment campaign. I am happy to discuss the Center's plans in more detail, should you have any questions.

I am looking forward to welcoming you back to our campus in the fall!

With deep gratitude for your support.

Warm regards,

Christina Bogdanou, Ph.D.